Freud taught in the beginning there was id, the most primitive part of the human mind. Freud saw the id as something we are born with and as the source of all drives and urges. Using the plumbing metaphor , the id is the plumber who wants to let of f all pressure at the slightest hint of strain or tension. The id is like a spoiled child—selfish impulsive, and pleasure-loving. According to Freud, the id operates according to the pleasure principle, which is the desire for immediate gratification. The id cannot tolerate any delays in satisfying its ur ges. During infancy, the id dominates. When an infant sees an attractive toy , it will reach for the toy and will cry and fuss if it cannot get it. Infants can sometimes appear unreasonable in their demands. Because the id operates according to the pleasure principle, it does not listen to reason, does not follow logic, has no values or morals (other than immediate gratification), and ha very little patience.
The id also operates with primary process thinking, which is thinking without logical rules of conscious thought or an anchor in reality . Dreams and fantasies are examples of primary process thinking. Although primary process thought does not follow the normal rules of reality (e.g., in dreams, people fly and walk through walls) Freud believed that there were principles at work in primary process thought and that these principles could be discovered. If an ur ge from the id requires an external object or person, and that object or person is not available, the id may create a mental image or fantasy of that object or person to satisfy its needs. Mental ener gy is invested in that fantasy, and the ur ge is temporarily satisfied. This process is called wish fulfill ment, whereby something unavailable is conjured up and the image of it is temporarily satisfying. Someone might be very angry , for example, but the tar get of the anger is too powerful to attack. In this case, engaging in wish fulfillment might pro duce an imagined fantasy of revenge for past wrongs. This strategy of wish fulfill ment works only temporarily to gratify the id, since the need is not satisfied in realit . A person must find other ways to gratify id u ges or hold them in check.
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